No. 8 Penn State Cruises Past Bucknell in Season Opener

LEWISBURG, Pa.; February 19, 2014 Junior midfielder Tatum Coffey (Toms River, N.J.) matched her career high in points, while sophomore midfielder Jenna Mosketti (Fallston, Md.) set personal bests in both goals and draw controls, as the No. 8 Penn State lacrosse team cruised to a 21-9 season-opening victory against Bucknell at Graham Field Wednesday evening.

The Nittany Lions, who scored their most goals in a game since netting 22 against Bucknell March 2, 2011, opened the season at 1-0 for the third straight year. Against the Bison, Coffey equaled her career high with six points (5g, 1a), while Mosketti's four goals and six draw controls set personal benchmarks.

Juniors Kelly Lechner (Silver Spring, Md.), who gathered a game-high three caused turnovers, and Maggie McCormick (Eldersburg, Md.) notched two goals and an assist each, while sophomore attacker Madison Cyr (Westminster, Md.) added a two-goal game. Junior transfer Jess Loizeaux (Mullica Hill, N.J.) and freshmen Taylor Bleistein (Bayville, N.Y.), Steph Lazo (Stevensville, Md.) and Abby Smucker (Bel Air, Md.) all scored in their Nittany Lion debuts.

In the cage, freshman Cat Rainone (Newtown Square, Pa.) earned the victory, making three saves in her first career start, while junior transfer Natalia Angelo (Summit, N.J.) and sophomore Emi Smith (Denver, Colo.) turned aside one and three Bison (0-2) attempts, respectively.

Penn State, which improved to 18-0 all-time against Bucknell, out shot the Bison by a 40-21 margin. The Nittany Lions also held advantages in ground balls (19-12) and draw controls (19-12), while finishing 14 for 16 on clears and netting 3 of 9 free-position shots.

After exchanging goals en route to a 2-2 game, Penn State opened the contest with an 8-0 run as the Nittany Lions grabbed a 10-2 lead with 10:55 left in the first half. Mosketti tallied Penn State's first goal of the 2014 campaign 1:38 into the contest before McCormick made it a 2-1 game with 25:48 left in the half.

After Bucknell tied the game, Lechner and Mosketti each netted a pair of strikes, while Coffey, Cyr, McCormick and Smucker added tallies as Penn State extended its lead to eight 19:05 into the game.

The Bison responded with three straight markers to cut the deficit to 10-5 before both Loizeaux and Coffey tallied markers in the frame's final 36 seconds for the 12-5 halftime lead.

Bucknell opened the second stanza with a pair of markers, but Penn State responded with five strikes, including senior Mackenzie Cyr's (Westminster, Md.) first of the year with 17:38 left in the game, for the 17-7 lead.

The Bison ended the run before the Nittany Lions answered with four of the game's last five goals. After Coffey netted a pair and Bleistein notched her first career strike, senior Shannon Lechner (Silver Spring, Md.) extended the Penn State lead to 21-8. The Bison scored with one second remaining as the Nittany Lions earned the 21-9 victory.

Penn State will return to action Saturday, Feb. 22 when it hosts No. 3/2 Maryland. The game is expected to be played outside at the Penn State Lacrosse Field at 3:00 p.m.

2014-02-19



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